Taking the mayhem out of marine fish keeping
The Marine Tank Environment
Where do you begin?
Hopefully after reading the first section of this website you have an idea of the type of tank you're going for. The fundamentals stay the same for any tank, you need to provide a stable environment regardless of your livestock list.
Once you have gone through the above you should be able to consider the equipment you will need to accommodate your new inhabitants.
The environment within your marine tank will make or break your hobby. If you get too relaxed and think the tank will just 'look after itself' the water quality will reduce and your livestock will start to suffer.
All marine creatures demand a different type of marine tank environment so you will find yourself grouping things together to be able to keep them in a single box. For example soft corals don't necessarily like as much flow as hard corals. Anenomes like a bit of flow in the tank but don't like flow directly pointed at them and some species of coral like almost still water.
The same can be said for the chemistry of the water in the tank. Salt water is made up of a myriad of different chemicals and each marine organism will use different amounts of each one. Soft corals don't tend to use too much of anything and can be happily maintained by frequent and regular water changes. If you are considering sps corals however these, in quantity can soon deplete levels of calcium and other elements to the extent you can find yourself adding them on a daily basis.
I have mentioned over and over again on most pages that stability is the key to successful marine fish keeping. If nothing else ensure that you are prepared to keep your inhabitants in the environment they deserve. It was not their choice to get shipped halfway across the globe to be stared at in someones glass box. You owe it to them to make sure you keep them in the way they deserve.
So it's all about the water
Always think of the health of your tank in terms of its water
Never get complacent about water changes, regardless of what you end up keeping water changes are an excelllent way of maintaining many of the parameters required to keep a health tank.
The Marine Tank Environment - in a nutshell
You always need to consider that one of the most important things in marine fish keeping is keeping the water in tip top condition
Flow is important in any marine tank to make sure your filtration is working properly
The chemistry of salt water is complicated, if you don't think you can grasp the nuances immediately then you will be better off starting with easier species such as fish and soft corals rather than plunging straight in at the eep end with sps corals
Live rock is one of the most common and effective ways of filtering your tank